Despite the formation of a transitional government by the Taliban, declaring a general amnesty and calling on the symbols of the former regime to return without prosecution and conduct the first commercial flight from Kabul airport, observers and experts in legal and financial affairs assert that the Taliban government may not obtain its frozen assets in the West, which are approximately 10 Billions of dollars, and the freezing of these funds may continue for a long time, which contributes to financially stifling the movement and obstructing it in the conduct of economic and financial activities.
The United States may also use its control of the global financial system to deny the Taliban access to foreign funds as long as their government is not recognized by Western governments.
Experts expected that Joe Biden’s administration would deal with the Taliban as it had previously dealt with the Iranian government after Khomeini’s rise to power and the fall of the Shah of Iran in 1979, thus continuing to freeze funds.
The country of Afghanistan has frozen funds abroad estimated at about 10 billion dollars, including 8.3 billion dollars, frozen in American banks and about 1.7 billion frozen in other Western banks in Europe
In terms of funding, analysts say that the US government will use the global financial system to besiege the Taliban government and deprive it of banking transactions, and may ban financial institutions and banks that deal with it financially.
It is noteworthy that the State of Afghanistan has frozen funds abroad estimated at about 10 billion dollars, including 8.3 billion dollars, frozen in US banks and about 1.7 billion frozen in other Western banks in Europe.
Western countries in Europe and America have so far taken a “wait and watch” attitude towards the Taliban, and link financial dealings with Afghanistan to the “legitimacy of the Taliban’s rule” and its international recognition, but the Taliban does not seem to care about this recognition or legitimacy, as the transitional government that it announced On Tuesday to administer the country for a period of 6 months, included figures accused of terrorism and former prisoners in Guantánamo Bay.
Analysts of the “Financial Times” newspaper believe that the movement, after the formation of the transitional government that will run the country or the “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan”, does not want to deal with Western governments, but officials of the movement deny these allegations and affirm their openness to the outside world.
In this regard, Professor Avinash Palwal, a professor at the University of London’s Department of Oriental Studies “South”, told the Financial Times that they “do not care about Western governments, and the formation of the government is a clear message to the West,” referring to the Taliban.
Thus, analysts believe that the Taliban may not get its frozen funds abroad unless its legitimacy is recognized, and so far there is an impossibility.
Analysts: The Taliban may not get its frozen funds abroad unless its legitimacy is recognized, and so far it is impossible.
In this regard, legal and financial expert Professor Robert Hockett, a professor at Cornell University, told the American “Insider” website, Wednesday evening, “It is impossible for the Taliban to obtain these frozen funds, both practically and legally.”
Professor Hockett added, “Legally, the Taliban government’s access to these frozen assets is impossible, because the Taliban is not yet recognized as the legitimate government of Afghanistan by the US government.”
He said, according to the provisions of US law, “The United States has the right to freeze funds for a recognized country, when its government is replaced by another unrecognized government.”
He said that the only way for the Taliban government to obtain the frozen assets of Afghanistan is to dissolve “the Taliban movement itself”, because the Taliban is classified by the United States as a “terrorist movement”.
According to what the fugitive Governor of the Central Bank of Afghanistan, Ajmal Ahmadi, told the “New York Times” in a previous interview, the Central Bank of Afghanistan has balances in its account with the Federal Reserve Bank, the “US Central Bank” in New York, worth $7 billion, and $1.3 billion frozen in other accounts. .
For his part, Rudy Gao, head of the Scottish Asian Institute, believes that the Taliban will exploit the geopolitical situation in the Central Asian region to obtain funding.
But Hockett said, “Afghan funds will remain frozen in the United States indefinitely, as happened with the Iranian funds that were frozen by America for decades in the wake of the fall of Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and Khomeini’s takeover of power.”
Rudy Gao, President of the Scottish Asian Institute: The Taliban will take advantage of the geopolitical situation in the Central Asian region to obtain funding.
“In the case of Iran, Iranian funds have been frozen in the United States for decades, and the same may happen to Afghan funds,” he said.
American Professor Hockett explains the difficulty of unfreezing funds, saying, “Legally, the United States can freeze these assets for a hundred years or decades.”
Hockett pointed out that Afghanistan has funds frozen in other countries and may face the same fate as frozen assets in America.
Hockett raises several possibilities regarding the fate of the frozen Afghan funds, among those possibilities, “that the US government will use it to pay compensation for the legal cases that will be brought by Afghan refugees who were evacuated by US and NATO forces in the wake of the Taliban’s takeover of power in Afghanistan.”
According to experts, it is expected that these refugees will be able to file successful cases in American and European courts against the Taliban movement, enabling them to obtain attractive compensation to be paid from these frozen funds.
And on the future of how to finance the Afghan government, Western experts said that the Taliban may be able to get money from “rogue elements.” But other experts said that the movement will seek funds from China and Pakistan.
China has investments estimated at 630 million dollars in Afghanistan and has its eye on the rare minerals contained in the Afghan mountains, whose value is estimated by the US Geological Service between 1 trillion and 3 trillion dollars.
Afghanistan provides a direct link to China’s “Belt and Road” projects with Pakistan and Iran. The trade volume between China and Afghanistan amounted to about $550 million during the past year.
Thus, the British expert and head of the Scottish Asian Institute, Rudy Gao, does not rule out that the Taliban will receive funding from China in the short term.